Esmail Hatami grew up watching his father care for the sick and disabled. They lived near a leprosy colony in Kurdistan, Iran. Esmail’s father was a healer and would spend his days tirelessly helping children, women and men suffering the effects of leprosy.

As Esmail got older, he took on more responsibilities at the colony and became passionate about serving people with leprosy.

In 1994, the Hatami family fled from Iran and settled as refugees in Calgary, Alberta. One of Esmail’s first priorities was finding a way to continue helping people with leprosy. While he was no longer living among them, he couldn’t turn his back knowing there was still such immense need.

After searching the internet for charities that fight against leprosy, Esmail discovered effect:hope and read through our projects and the many ways we’re helping to bring hope to those who are suffering. Esmail felt compelled to join our fight.

Today, Esmail is using his talents to help. Every Tuesday and Thursday at the Capitol Hill Community centre, you can find Esmail and his students dancing for a cure. The profits from each student’s registration is donated to effect:hope.

So far, Esmail has donated just over $12,000 to help people with leprosy!

We want to thank Esmail and many other supporters like him, for their compassionate dedication. Our Canadian donors are the backbone of this organization and the reason so many people are finding hope and healing after being diagnosed with a Neglected Tropical Disease.